Are you a person who wants to exercise your right to carry a gun concealed? Is your Grandpa’s old holster so worn out that you want to retire it and save it as a memento? Have you searched the web and found the hundreds of concealed carry holsters out there?
If you’re like me, you’re afraid to make a bad purchase, so you want to do your research into a product before you buy it. With all the different types of holsters out there, it’s hard to navigate all of the different features, so you want to know how to pick a concealed carry holster.
When picking a concealed carry holster you need to balance three main features: concealment, comfort, and durability. Concealment refers to how much the holster can be hidden by your clothes, so your gun isn’t noticed in public. If you’re going to be wearing this regularly, you also need it to be comfortable. When investing in products, it’s always a good practice to buy something that lasts and has high durability. By deciding which of these factors is a priority for you, you can look at the different reviews of holsters and decide which might be the best fit for your needs.
Let’s look more closely at concealed holsters and how their features compare with one another.
THREE FEATURES TO COMPARE WHEN BUYING
Concealed carry guns are the things we hope we never have to use, but we’re prepared should the need arise. When you go to look at the holsters either online or in person, you want the best you can get for the price you’re willing to pay.
You need to find out how different holsters perform in these categories (or let review articles from Gun Goals such as The 5 Best 1911 Concealed Carry Holsters do it for you). Read on to see what these features entail and how they affect each other.
The whole point of concealed carry is that when you’re out in public people don’t notice that you’re carrying a firearm. This places you in the position of secret protector to those around you should the drastic occur. You’re going to want a holster that conceals your handgun as effectively as possible.
Concealed carry holsters come most often in the IWB or Inside the Waist Band variety. These sleek holsters fit in between your pants and your body and secure to your belt with one or two clips. Often, the IWB become almost invisible except for the small clip seen on your belt which can be furthered covered by wearing looser clothing.
While it is possible to use an OWB (Over the Waist Band) holsters for concealed carry, they are not designed to be used in such a way. Depending on the type of holster and clothing you choose to wear, it is possible to use OWBs in such way. The benefit of doing so would be that you have easier access to your gun when compared to an IWB.
If you choose to carry concealed, you’re probably also going to want to bring your firearm with you wherever it is legally possible. If you end up wearing it day after day for long periods of time, it had better be comfortable.
Not all IWBs are created equal in this category. Some come with one clip, are extremely low profile and comfortable, but move too much. You may find yourself having to adjust the holster all day to keep it from poking you.
There are IWBs that use two clips and fit very securely to your belt for easy drawing, but because they take up more space you may notice them throughout your day. Depending on your size and body shape, some holsters may ride to high or low against your hip or back.
I recommend you look into a holster that is adjustable. Often the height of the holster can be changed as can the cant, or angle, to better fit your body.
Fair warning, sometimes the holster’s comfort level is determined by how you wear the holster (see the video below for more suggestions). If you get the chance to try it out in person, secure the concealed carry holster in different positions to see what works for you.
A lot of the durability of a concealed carry holster depends on the material and construction. If the product is made poorly, no holster lasts through repeated usage. The four main types of material for holsters are leather, synthetic, hybrid, and nylon.
Leather – Tough, natural material that is durable and looks great. This has been the traditional choice for holsters for decades and with good reason. These quiet and long-lasting holsters may require some breaking in, but they are comfortable and adjust to your body over time.
Synthetic – Extremely durable and holds its shape well. Because synthetic materials are unnaturally strong, they are able to be shaped into different ways and often provide more adjustability. Kydex is the top material of choice for synthetics.
Hybrid – As the name implies, hybrid holsters try to get the best of both leather and synthetic worlds. The comfortable leather rides against your skin while the durable and molded synthetic secures to your belt and provides quick draw and reholster capabilities.
Nylon – The nylon or cloth holster is for the budget conscious. They aren’t tough, durable, or easy-to-use, but they are cheap.
Keep these ideas in mind as you shop around. When you know how to pick a concealed carry holster, the buying process becomes much easier, and you can rest easy knowing that you’re going to make a quality purchase.
Be sure to compare the concealment, comfort, and durability of each holster to make sure you end up with a functional and easy-to-use product that stands the test of time.
Have fun, and keep on shooting!
If you like this article, you may also enjoy learning how to make a concealed carry holster.